Better Business Bureau serving Northeast California warns consumers of a Coca-Cola lottery promotion scam.
A local Oroville woman received an e-mail notifying her that she was a winner for a Coca-Cola Lottery promotion in the United Kingdom. The e-mail requested personal information, including her home address and mobile number, in order for her to claim her winnings.
The woman stated that this e-mail initially seemed legitimate because it used big corporate names like Coca-Cola, Chevron and Texaco.
Coca-Cola has acknowledged the use of their company name in e-mail scams like this. You can find out more here.
Sweepstakes and lottery scams like this follow a predictable pattern. An unsolicited phone call, e-mail, letter or fax notifies a victim that they have won a prize. They explain to the victim that he/she must send a small sum of money to cover fees or taxes. Victims wire the money and never receive their supposed winnings.
BBB offers the following tips to protect yourself online:
•If you did not enter to win, you most likely did not win.
•Never send any payment to anyone as a requirement for receiving your prize. Any such request means that the prize notification is bogus.
•Never send a wire transfer or give the access number to a prepaid money card to anyone you do not know, or anyone you suspect might be trying to steal your money. Wire transfers and prepaid cards are like cash and can’t be recovered.